It hardly feels like Advent here, and I find myself annoyed with all the tender reflections. I remember reading a blogger once, one who tends to be tenderly reflectional, and he said he could not bear to read one more meaningful paragraph of introspection.
I don’t want to know why my soul has been hurting, why negative thoughts have been creeping in slow. The reasons are endless and pain has no answers. It doesn’t need to be this way-or that is what I tell myself. I don’t want to feel this. I don’t want to be this.
The kids and I read from Luke 5 today. There were five sections, so I had each child narrate back to me a story. After Jesus healed a paralytic and called Simon and friends to be fishers of men, I had them take out their journals and meditate on this sentence:
“But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.”
I imagine Jesus sitting in a desert on a rock. Crowds had been coming to hear Jesus teach and find healing for their sicknesses. People use verses like this as examples how even Jesus Himself practiced “self-care”. Some people have adverse reactions to this term.
It’s never really bothered me. I think “self-care” is really just the concept of a “sabbath”. God gives people the gift of His rest. Even people who don’t know God eventually figure out you can’t just continue on and on without stopping. People need to take breaks.
Jesus doesn’t withdraw to kick back and watch tv. He doesn’t withdraw to go spend time alone. He actually withdraws to spend time with His Father. I wonder what they talked about. I wonder what he cried about. I wonder and smile for what Jesus prayed about.